I was 16 year old when I first read Arundhati Roy’s “The God of Small Thing” , maybe too young to understand the political subtext that it carried, but still that book had an impact on me. Regardless of what people may write about her or whatever may be her political ideology be, I am glad that the booker’s council got her into the limelight for the right reasons- for her book. Former winner to the biggest award for fiction, she is longlisted for her book “The Ministry of Utmost Happiness” along with many decorated authors.
Last years winner, Paul Beatty’s “The Sellout” was the first American book to win this prize, this year another 4 American books have been longlisted. Additionally 4 British, 2 Irish, 2 UK-Pakistani and one Indian authors have made the list. In total there are 7 men and 6 women authors which shows that there is very balanced and diverse voices from the list.
Apart from “The Ministry of Utmost Happiness”, I am also excited about Ali Smith’s “Autumn” and “Exit West” by Mohsin Hamid- which are my first three from the list. I got introduced to Ali Smith’s writing through bookers only, when in 2014, her book “How to Be Both” was longlisted. Since then I have read her other books and also listened her podcasts and views, especially during Brixit referendum .
Also I had earlier read “Exit West” preview on the kindle and I had liked what I read, so I am excited to see it get in the list.